New Delhi: Union Home Minister Amit Shah joined a group of farmers at Mehrauli on Friday, 25th December, in New Delhi as Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed them, according to a statement from the Ministry of Home Affairs. Speaking on the occasion, HM Shah said that under the leadership of PM Modi, the Central Government is committed to the welfare of farmers. All farmers in the village expressed their full faith with enthusiasm and zeal in all the farmers’ welfare policies and agricultural reforms of the Modi government, said the Union Home Minister, adding that for the last six years, the Modi government has taken every decision keeping in focus the poor, farmers, and the underprivileged that empowered them with their rights and changed their lives for the better. The PM-Kisan is also one such unprecedented scheme whereby Prime Minister Modi sends Rs. 6000 to farmers’ accounts every year, he stated.
HM Shah observed that Prime Minister Modi released another instalment of PM-Kisan Samman Nidhi on 25th December, crediting Rs. 18,000 crores in the accounts of 9 crore farmers so that they can fulfil their agriculture-related needs, saying, “I congratulate PM Modi for his dedication and commitment towards the empowerment of the farmers.” The Home Minister said that when the Prime Minister came out with the Kisan Samman Nidhi scheme, almost all opposition leaders opposed it, adding that they demanded the waiver of farmers’ debts. Home Minister Shah said that while the UPA government waived off a loan of just Rs. 60,000 crore in 10 years, Prime Minister Modi has, in just two-and-a-half years, transferred Rs. 95,000 crore so far directly to the accounts of ten crore farmers.
Presenting a comparative study of agricultural data before and after 2014, HM Shah said that the production of food grains in 2013-14 was only 265 million tonnes, whereas today it has increased to 296 million tonnes. In 2013-14, the agricultural budget was only Rs. 21,933 crore whereas today the agriculture budget under the leadership of PM Modi has increased to Rs. 1,34,399 crore, he said, adding that those who could not increase the agricultural budget, today they are demanding explanations from the Modi Government.
Home Minister Shah declared that he wanted to tell farmers across the country that the opposition leaders do not have any issues, they are only spreading lies. He said that the Prime Minister has clarified many times and that he has made it clear again that MSP was, is, and always will be there. For years, farmers had demanded that the MSP be at least one-and-a-half times the cost of their crops, but for 70 years successive governments did not take any action on it, Shah said, adding that Prime Minister Modi fulfilled the demands of farmers, ensuring them one-and-a-half times the cost price of crop production.
According to the Home Ministry, the Amit Shah also said that between 2009-2014, only about Rs. 3,74,000 crore was spent for the purchase of paddy and wheat, while between 2014-2019, paddy and wheat worth Rs. 8,22,000 crore was purchased. Apart from this, the Modi Government took several initiatives like the Soil Health Card and Neem Coated Urea, which have benefited the farmers of the country, the Home Minister stated, adding that about 1,000 mandis across the country have been made online, enabling the farmers to fetch the best prices for their crops. The Prime Minister Crop Insurance Scheme has benefited more than six-and-a-half crore farmers of the country, claimed Shah, adding that about 10,000 farmer producing organisations have been set up and a provision of Rs. 7,000 crore was made for this. Another Rs. 500 crore was arranged for honey production, Shah noted, adding that under the Prime Minister Irrigation Scheme, work has been done to irrigate 55 lakh hectares of land through micro-irrigation scheme.
The Home Minister said that he wanted to assure his farmer brothers across the country regarding the hue and cry the opposition parties have raked up on the agrarian reforms laws, that all the three agrarian reforms Acts are in the best interest of the farmers, and that there is no harm to the farmers, adding that neither will the mandis be closed nor can anyone snatch the farmers’ land. Shah proclaimed that as long as Narendra Modi is the Prime Minister of the country, no corporate can take away the land of the farmer brothers. Mandis will also be operational, he said, adding that he wanted to ask the opposition leaders which provision of these agrarian reform laws says that mandis would be closed down. The Home Minister issued an open challenge, saying, “If you have the courage, come for a debate, our MPs are ready to discuss with you.”
HM Shah said that the Shankarlal Guru Committee had recommended the agricultural reform laws that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has now brought in, observing that in 2001, Montek Singh Ahluwalia also retained these proposals, and that the Sharad Joshi Task Force also recommended it. He continued, saying that these proposals also came in the Model APMC Act of 2003, and that these recommendations were also made in the report of the Swaminathan Commission, and that it was also recommended in the committee which was formed while Sharad Pawar was the Agriculture Minister.
Home Minister Shah said that today farmers across the country want to ring up Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar and meet him and give their support to these agricultural reform laws. He said they are supporting the three agrarian reform laws because they know that these agrarian reform laws are in the best interest of the farmers. He called to leave aside the opposition, saying that they have political interest, and added that if the farmers’ organisations still feel that any provision of these agricultural laws will hurt the farmers, then the Government is ready to discuss that provision with the farmers’ organisations with an open mind. He said that if any provision is anti-farmer, then the Narendra Modi Government is ready to consider it. Home Minister Shah said in conclusion that the Modi Government will always work for the welfare of the farmers of the country and will not rest till doubling the farmers’ income is achieved.
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